March 2010 Archives

Coast Weekend

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Had a nice weekend at the coast last weekend.

Headed down Friday afternoon/evening.  

Contrails
Wind turbines

Stopped for pizza in Malua Bay at the Sandy Foot Cafe.  Decided to eat in, and had a "Big Mama".

Big mama pizza

The others had arrived just before us, but they let us have "our" room.. very sweet of them :)

Proceeded with the challenge of a keg in a weekend.  But I didn't have to put too much effort into it - got quite a bit of help from Dave and some from Stu :)  After a bit of Wii Sports Resort we had a spa til 2:30 until the dog really needed to go to sleep.

Keg!

On Saturday morning I started a 3D jigsaw of a church and had an early snack lunch before heading up to Myrtle Beach for a swim.  It was *soooo* beautiful!!  Except for all the seaweed on the beach, but that was a totally minor thing.  The water was beautiful and warm and crystal clear, I was kicking myself I didn't bring our snorkels.  We caught a little (1.5cm) fish in our hands, and a similar sized squid or cuttlefish baby.  And a little black worm thing.  One of the best ocean swims I've ever had.  

Myrtle Beach

Headed back to the house for more food and jigsaws.  I finished the 3D one and started on a "mystery" one - it comes with a story and you have to look at the picture (once it's finished - there's no picture on the box) to solve the mystery.  Finished that while the others cooked up a storm on the barbeque.  We finished the keg at 6:30pm - WTF?? :)  Good thing Dave had brought some kirin :)  Ate dinner by candlelight for earth hour (even though supposedly candles produce more greenhouse gasses than electric lights - fail! heh)  Only stayed up in the spa til 12:30 :)

3D church jigsaw
View from the house
BBQ

Sunday I started another jigsaw - one I got off freecycle recently.  Played a bit of Wii as well (Super Mario Bros for Wii - still didn't like it any better the second time around).  Cleaned up and headed home mid afternoon (via The Scottish Restaurant).  It was so fricken humid at the coast that it was bliss to sit in an air conditioned car for a while!  Was pretty grumpy that I missed the airport open day.  Think I'll cancel whatever plans I have next time..  But otherwise a very nice weekend.

Violet Grace

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Coast photos will have to wait another night.

Cause today Violet Grace decided to enter the world.  If she'd come yesterday or tomorrow she'd have been someone else (name-wise), quite funny really.

It was all fairly civilised really.  They sent Jake off to school.  Then labour started so they went to hospital.  Kerry had an epidural so was relatively relaxed through the whole process.  Baby delivered at 3pm.  We arrived with Jake about 6:30, making this the youngest baby I've ever seen (previously it was Marc at 10 hours old).

Family photo
Violet Grace
The t-shirt colour I had seemed somehow appropriate...
Violet Grace

The day after Doc's 30th, we found one of Stu's tires completely flat - and this was the pretty obvious cause of it

Puncture

Saw this rainbow on the living room carpet the other morning.  It refracted through the fish tank and looked pretty cool.

Carpet rainbow
The first fog of the season.  I thought this was pretty early for fog (23rd March)

First fog
They're colour-coding the data centre at the moment, so they have all these cool coloured cat5 cables.

Colourful Cat 5 Cables
Wow.. two rainbows in one entry .. hrmm

I'll post coast trip photos tomorrow..

Cannelloni

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Made this two weeks ago - cannelloni!

We replaced the beef with TVP for a vegetarian option and skipped the chilli, but otherwise followed the recipe pretty much exactly.  It turned out quite well - maybe slightly dry - but my fault for not adding enough moisture in the middle.  

I liked this recipe because for the most part it used "whole" things - whole packets of things and whole onions etc.  Makes shopping for it very easy.  

Sadly, like the lasagna, it takes a *lot* of effort and time to make.  

And it doesn't photograph well at all :)  (There were two baking dishes-full from the packet of tubes)

Cannelloni

Haven't put any books up in ages.

At night I've been reading the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  Over the past couple of months I've finished "By the Shores of Silver Lake", "The Long Winter" and "Little Town on the Prairie".  

These books cover the Ingalls' leaving Plum Creek (Walnut Grove) and moving out to De Smet, South Dakota where they settled, and the first few years they spent there.  They arrived at the very beginning of the settlement of De Smet, and had to endure the harsh winter of 1880/81 when there were literally no supplies in the town, and no way for trains to get through.  Must have been pretty scary.  

The books are getting more and more interesting as they go along.  I'm finding it hard to stop at just one chapter before bed!

On the bus over December/January I read a couple of James Herriot's books.  Firstly "Vet in Harness", a Book Crossing book I've had for a few years, and then "If Only They Could Talk", which I started reading in about Year 11 (~1990) but never finished.  The stories in these books are quite amusing, but it was a little disappointing to read that they were more fiction than fact.  Surely some of the actual veterinary experiences must have happened, but presumably the stories around them were embellished somewhat.  But his actual practice building is now a museum and can be found in Thirsk in Yorkshire, and there is even a Darrowby Inn in the town!
Had a dream last night that I got so sick of all the crap in my job that I decided to quit.  I had two days to go and was in a bit of a panic about getting documentation done, and was feeling a little regretful about leaving everyone and knew I'd miss plenty of stuff.  Except the proxies.  Those I would be happy to never see again in my life.

Real life pretty much imitated the dream.  Abandoned any hope of getting any "real" work done quite early in the day.

I did have a productive hour when I got home from work, but then discovered that the girl guppy I bought a week ago was dead :(  I swear I am utterly cursed buying guppies.  I've never once bought a guppy and had it survive more than a week or two.  Here I am trying to diversify my gene pool, but these stoopid little fish don't want to be in it.  

Epic *sigh*

I'd like a better day tomorrow please? Thx.
Last night we had Nat and Andrew over so we could eat the Batman chicken nuggets I'd had for a few months in the freezer.  We also played some Pictionary (the boys sooo didn't want to) and watched Love Actually and had pasta and salad for dinner.  

Today was just a quiet day at home.  I dusted nearly a half of my models, some requiring a damp cloth (the trick being not to wipe off decals with the dust).

Models

This evening we went to All Bar Nun for Doc's birthday drinks and dinner.  Had a lot more drinks than dinner! :)  Doc jumped out of a perfectly good aeroplane this morning so was fun to hear about his experience with that.  The sweetie wanted to come home a lot earlier than I was ready to .. doh..!  But otherwise quite a pleasant evening :)

Stu and Neil at Doc's 30th
Food platter at Doc's 30th

It's not trivial..

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So after the cancellation last year due to lack of interest, we ran our trivia night tonight to a full house! Hurrah!

We only had to replace some of the current events questions and a few other questions here and there throughout the   set.  We did ten rounds of ten questions, as well as a couple of "filler" rounds - logos and ditloids.

Generally it all went fairly well.  Had a few *good* questions where people went "oohhhh" or "doohhhhh" when they heard the answers.  A few dud questions that really noone got, or *everyone* got.

Would we do another one...??  Don't know.. it was an awful lot of work .. DC keeps thinking of questions, so I have a feeling he'd be up for another one hehe :)

Ball

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The only significant event of the weekend this weekend was the Ball we went to last night.

The minor problem of the whole night being I hadn't worn the dress I wore in nearly two years.  I think I've put on a heap of weight since then :(  So it was nearly a big disaster.  Felt like I was in a straight jacket all night.  Took a good three champagnes before I finally started to relax.  Speaking of which, they friggen ran out of champagne!!?!?  How epic fail is that?  

Anyway, it was quite a fun night.  Even danced (I'm allergic to dancing) and the sweetie even danced with us.  And Chris snuck us a bottle of wine to take home hehe :)

Some of our table at the ball
Ball
Bradman Room at Manuka Oval
Ball
The sweetie and me
Ball
Lamb entree - lovely and tender
Entree at the ball
Chicken main - not too bad
Dinner at the ball
I claimed the Queen of Hearts card
Queen of hearts

Chris and his Astin Martin
Chris and his Astin Martin
Other than that we mostly just moaned in sickness for the rest of the weekend.  Stu wanted to get some fish and plants so we took the car for a wash and had subway for lunch, and I got a new guppy as well.  Didn't realise how few healthy guppies I have left :(

Models

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Pulled my models out of their storage boxes today, making this the first time I've seen them since I packed them up before leaving Sydney in 2007.  Now that the big bookshelves have been replaced downstairs, I can reclaim them for my models.

The models survived two moves quite well.  Maybe only one or two things had damage from the moves which was really good.

They all need dusting, and a few need minor repairs.  I will be attaching clear plastic to the shelves so at least they won't get dusty again in the future...

Kazza's models

Yesterday, Today

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Yesterday was sleep in the morning (hurrah!!) then Survivor (Heroes vs Villains) then some work (til I was told to get off) then Something's Gotta Give (which was mislabelled as As Good As it Gets) then Ice Castles (borrowed off Neil - sweet movie) then dinner (the sweetie cooked pasta yayyyy) then bed (early - 10pm).

Today after a good nights' sleep went to work.  Morning went quite quickly and then it was meetings all afternoon and then it was beer o'clock.  And now it's 9:30pm.  Most pleasant day of the week really heh.

Better..

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Spent most of today resting.  In fact I spent several hours in bed trying *unsuccessfully* to sleep some more. Grunt.

Got up and ready around lunch time then sat at my computer for a while before dialling into work to teleconference with the vendor of one of our problematic products.  

Tried again to sleep.  Failed.

Cooked a tomato bake with some potato and Batman chicken nuggets for dinner.

Batman Chicken Nuggets

Started feeling better after dinner.  But now I'm in a dilemma.. do I go to work tomorrow, work from home, or just continue to rest/recover??  F1!!
I still don't have pictures for this entry.  If anyone cares, come back in a few days.

The first half of the long weekend was great.

Friday night we went over to Nat and Andrew's and met Suki.  Soooo cute!  Had pizza for dinner, then played some Wii music (some bits of it were fun, others were tedious), Singstar, Wiiracas and Mario Kart.

Suki
Suki
Suki
Suki and the sweetie

Saturday we went to Belco markets for breakfast and to look at fish shops.  Got back and got some housework done then spent a good chunk of the afternoon doing fish stuff.  Stu did a big tidy of the fish stuff in the garage and I cleaned out the danio tank and took the five danios back upstairs.

Sunday was doing more housey stuff when I started having an immune reaction.  So went and lay down around lunch time for a couple of hours.  The rest of the afternoon went in slow motion.  Did do a little tidying of my hobby room, so at least the day wasn't a complete waste :/

Today was just a mopey blah sort of day.  Did a jigsaw.  Ripped some of my cds.  Did the food shopping cause we had to.  That was about it really.

Opera House Jigsaw
Cockies
Cockies
Cockies

I did freecycle a couple of inkjet printers which was good.  Although a bit sad giving away a printer I spent $300 on back in the day.  Nowadays it's practically cheaper to buy a new printer than it is to buy new ink.  So stoopid.
Have a couple of days worth of blog/photos to post one day... 

Feeling like crap at the moment.. probably got whatever Andrew had on Friday .. *sigh*

Family

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Went over to Scott and Kerry's for dinner cause Jeff and Ruth were in town.

Had a beer and a bit of wine and the evening passed quite smoothly heh
Sunday arvo, Nat and Andrew picked me up and we toddled off to the Canberra Show.  I've never been before (and in fact haven't been to the Sydney Easter Show since it was last at Paddington in 1997).  

Had a good time just wandering around and looking at things.  Barely spent any money.  I did buy five daffodil bulbs.  And a Moove (the mobile Moove man kinda convinced me).  And a hot dog and fairy floss for dinner.  Quite annoyed that you can't buy fresh fairy floss anymore, you have to buy it in a plastic bag :(

Took 383 photos.. here's just a few of them :)

Ferris Wheel and tower from the car park.  The walk back to the car felt like a lot lot longer than the walk from the car!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Working steam engine
Royal Canberra Show 2010
These guys look a bit like our next door neighbour's goat
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Goat closeup
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Goats have really freaky eyes..!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Sheepdog goat!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Donkey trial
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Alpaca
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Ducklings!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
This was one massive pig!  The area smelt like pork (before roasting) .. can't imagine why!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Bubbles!!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Orange juice stand (this girl had her butt out whenever we went past)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Wall of bubble machines
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Kazza the dwarf...
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Mobile Moove man (Nat getting a drink)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Catching a wave
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Ferris Wheel (would have been nice to go up - maybe next time)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Rides
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Kitty with a moustache.  We were trying to take pictures through the bars and the dude came along and opened the cage for us :)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
I so want one of these!  This thing (apart from the way cool little house around it) has a tv and dvd/cd player built in!!  Andrew said all we need is water-proof wii-motes for spa-wii-ing :)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
I always like the cake decorating.  This ship was my favorite
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Icing flowers are amazing!
Royal Canberra Show 2010
This was straight out of the Women's Weekly Children's Birthday Cake book..! Lame!! Especially since it won a prize
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Flowers
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Flowers
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Woolworths fruit/veggie display
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Onions in the veggie display
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Chocolate fountain
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Back to the pigs.  Noticed this time that all the piglets' tails were docked :(
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Camel race
Royal Canberra Show 2010
They race to a bucket of food at the end of the track
Royal Canberra Show 2010
This kid looked as if she owned the place.  She was in everyone's way of the view, so we couldn't help but laugh when she later fell off trying to get on or off.
Royal Canberra Show 2010
They were running about 45 minutes late and we had to go, but the Hiluxes started up as we were half way round the track)
Royal Canberra Show 2010
Flying Hilux!
Royal Canberra Show 2010

Windows 7

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Formatted my C: drive last night and installed Windows 7 proper.  Copped plenty of flak at work for buying it retail, but now that I come to think of it, it's probably the first time I've *ever* paid full price for an operating system.. The last couple have come with the PCs and before that it was all uni stuff.  

I decided not to get an upgrade, since I didn't want to spend time trying to find my Dell recovery cds or deal with any of the hassles of trying to get a key to work (having read horror stories about it).  

So backed everything up just in case (data is all on d: drive, but it was scheduled for last night anyway) then backed up my users directory to make sure I had things like my Google Earth place markers, Live Messenger history, and Chrome history/session data.

And then installed Windows 7.  Went totally smoothly.  In fact a few minutes after it started I went and hung out all my washing, then came back and it was nearly done.  Installed and restored Chrome and I was up and running again, hurrah!
Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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